Category: rearing

caterpillar-gifs:

Imperial moth caterpillar, now 4th instar! One more molt to go before pupation!

October 20, 2019

Still alive, still unemployed, still raising giant chonking caterpillars. Got 40 of these spiny sausages.

Save me

Also, hire me dammit

October 21, 2019

nanonaturalist:

A lively, freshly molted Zygoballus jumping spider. Most jumping spiders are super tiny. This video was recorded through a microscope.

May 23, 2017

Loved this little babe–they moved into one of my caterpillar containers and caught little gnats and plant bugs from their food. 

Reposted July 21 , 2019

nanonaturalist:

The sticks have been molting every week–I’ve caught (and filmed) several molts. They seem to grow almost an inch with each molt, and they are starting to change colors. Originally green with white specks, the male is now a dark green/grey, female is green/gold/pink. They both have the spines on the two rear sets of legs seen in adults. Since adult Megaphasma denticrus don’t have wings, I’m not exactly sure how to tell when they are done growing up. 

They are big now, so they are also much faster, and cleaning the tank is an exercise in juggling giant sticks. As seen above.

May 24, 2017

The female (first photo!) was an adult in this photo series! You can tell they are done growing by how mature their… uh… reproductive organs are, and also by how well-formed the spines on their tibias are!

The male was still one molt away from being an adult in these photos.

Also, I learned: How do you keep them from constantly escaping while cleaning the tank? Turn the tank on it’s side! Granted, they still escape, but they have a much harder time finding the exit. Right now I have… uh… more than two, and usually only four of them can escape while I’m cleaning.

Reposted July 17, 2019

nanonaturalist:

Megaphaspma denticrus egg dropping. One of MANY. More details to come.

June 7, 2017

I had to film their butts for like, an hour, to capture this momentous occasion. 

The stick insects I have currently are their grandchildren!

Reposted July 15, 2019

woofwolfy:

nanonaturalist:

nanonaturalist:

nanofishology:

Butterfly House at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. One of the better ones I’ve been in!

Visited the museum for this post December 2016, desperately need to go back (yes, I have been there again since, but still).

Fun fact: when I first started raising butterflies, I looked back to this post to see how they had hung their chrysalids to figure out how in the heck to do it myself. I couldn’t figure it out so I developed my own method. But now that I know what I’m doing, I can tell you: that cord the chrysalids are hanging off is probably silk, and they have probably wrapped the silk mats the caterpillars laid down around the cord. So simple! Either that, or they used a super secret butterfly glue I don’t know about because I’m not in the Butterfly Blood Brotherhood.

Reposting July 9, 2019

@xbainekox Human skin is a great barrier, and it protects is from all sorts of nasty stuff, but other animals are much more sensitive. Superglue contains some extremely toxic organic solvents, which could very quickly absorb through the chrysalis skin and harm the developing butterfly.

There is a TEENY TINY part of the chrysalis, called the cremaster, which is the thick sturdy part that hooks onto the silk pad (it’s the “stem” part). I think this could safely be glued, and if folks are using superglue, they are doing it here. I’d just be so worried I’m screwing up, and the chrysalids I’m hanging do not have well-defined cremasters!

The method I use now works well enough, and nobody is ever in danger.

July 10, 2019

The local butterfly house uses scotch tape! They collect the chrysalids and stick them in high places out of kiddos reach.

That’s basically what I do now!

I pinch the silk mat between a fold of tape, string it on a pipe cleaner, and hang it up in my laundry hamper!

July 10, 2019

scereyaha:

nanonaturalist:

nanonaturalist:

nanofishology:

Butterfly House at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. One of the better ones I’ve been in!

Visited the museum for this post December 2016, desperately need to go back (yes, I have been there again since, but still).

Fun fact: when I first started raising butterflies, I looked back to this post to see how they had hung their chrysalids to figure out how in the heck to do it myself. I couldn’t figure it out so I developed my own method. But now that I know what I’m doing, I can tell you: that cord the chrysalids are hanging off is probably silk, and they have probably wrapped the silk mats the caterpillars laid down around the cord. So simple! Either that, or they used a super secret butterfly glue I don’t know about because I’m not in the Butterfly Blood Brotherhood.

Reposting July 9, 2019

@xbainekox Human skin is a great barrier, and it protects is from all sorts of nasty stuff, but other animals are much more sensitive. Superglue contains some extremely toxic organic solvents, which could very quickly absorb through the chrysalis skin and harm the developing butterfly.

There is a TEENY TINY part of the chrysalis, called the cremaster, which is the thick sturdy part that hooks onto the silk pad (it’s the “stem” part). I think this could safely be glued, and if folks are using superglue, they are doing it here. I’d just be so worried I’m screwing up, and the chrysalids I’m hanging do not have well-defined cremasters!

The method I use now works well enough, and nobody is ever in danger.

July 10, 2019

I did also hear you could use super glue and a dead butterfly’s wings to fix a living butterfly’s broken wing so they could carry on their way… I’m hoping that’s not actually a terrible idea? I suspect they’d be more susceptible to toxins while developing than on their wings as an adult, non?

The wings are all non-living material (like your hair and fingernails). Just like you can cut and glue stuff to your hair and nails without affecting your health at all, same with butterfly wings. So that’s fine!

A WEIRD THING people tend to not realize, though! The chrysalis isn’t a cocoon or a protective shell the butterfly develops inside. The chrysalis IS THE BUTTERFLY between the caterpillar and butterfly life stages. The skin of the chrysalis is the living skin of the organism. Sure, they harden up and become somewhat protective, but the solvents in superglue are nasty. A drop on us, eh, no big deal.

A drop of superglue on a chrysalis covers a signigicant proportion of its entire body surface area. They are tiny, and a drop of superglue is huge to them! The chrysalis skin is the thicknes of the thinnest tissue paper you’ve ever seen, it’s amazing. Solvents or funes from superglue could easily pass through it and harm the butterfly.

July 10, 2019

nanonaturalist:

A big, fat Tawny Emperor (Asterocampa clyton) lady came out of her chrysalis today, but we had a storm in Austin and I didn’t want to release her in the rain! So I gave her some plum, over-ripe banana, and a paper towel soaked in hummingbird nectar (4 parts water, 1 part sugar). She went for the nectar and the banana when I watched her!

Had to take photos through the sides of the enclosure she’s sharing with a Gulf Fritillary and Question Mark, both also came out today. I wasn’t able to photograph them, though! These look like I’m a sneaky butterfly paparazzi, huh?

For the Asterocampa butterflies, the females are larger, have a fatter abdomen, and the bottom wing (called the hindwing) is rounded out. In the males, the hindwing is more triangular, the outer edge is straight, not circular.

June 27, 2019

About to release, Question Mark nomming banana

June 28, 2019

A big, fat Tawny Emperor (Asterocampa clyton) lady came out of her chrysalis today, but we had a storm in Austin and I didn’t want to release her in the rain! So I gave her some plum, over-ripe banana, and a paper towel soaked in hummingbird nectar (4 parts water, 1 part sugar). She went for the nectar and the banana when I watched her!

Had to take photos through the sides of the enclosure she’s sharing with a Gulf Fritillary and Question Mark, both also came out today. I wasn’t able to photograph them, though! These look like I’m a sneaky butterfly paparazzi, huh?

For the Asterocampa butterflies, the females are larger, have a fatter abdomen, and the bottom wing (called the hindwing) is rounded out. In the males, the hindwing is more triangular, the outer edge is straight, not circular.

June 27, 2019

thedarkempressofthenight:

skeletonmilk:

thedarkempressofthenight:

bogleech:

nanonaturalist:

A question

If I sold caterpillar faces, would people buy them, and how much should I charge for them?

They make for *very interesting* arts and crafts supplies, and the caterpillars drop them after each molt (molting caterpillar pictured, you can see his new face squeezing out of the new one better below).

I have a decent sized collection of various kinds of caterpillars, and they all look different.

Whatcha guys think?

June 19, 2019

SELL US THE GOODS

This makes me so sad…

Why? It’s a molt, they didn’t die. It’s just some funky shed skin.

Because I had a cup of wine, let a dude break my heart, and then lost the ability to read before judging people and their face stealing. How you doin’?

^ me

Only, the tables are turned

(Bwahahaha)

June 26, 2019

Some Sausages

Hackberry Emperor, Asterocampa celtis

June 24, 2019